What can you do in 30 seconds?

30 second exposure photograph

This photographer used a 30 second exposure… at 10pm at night. (submitted to reddit by user onthenextlevel)

Whether you’re waiting in line, waiting for your computer to restart, or staring at the countdown for your leftovers in the microwave, your life is full of short chunks of time. It’s tempting to dismiss these as useless, but there’s a lot that can be accomplished in 30 seconds. My personal 30 second wonder is in the kitchen. For the duration of the microwave count, I like to clean up the clutter or wipe down a few countertops. It’s surprising just how much you can get done. Or, sometimes when I’m sitting in traffic I go over my to-do list and come up with a plan of action.

Check out some other ideas for those tiny moments of downtime here at Lifehacker.

Former WRAC Intern now at Notre Dame

Lexi DakinLexi Dakin, Professional Writing graduate from the class of 2013, has recently taken over as the Coordinator of Soccer Operations for The University of Notre Dame. She manages the social media, video and film exchange, budgeting, travel, promotions, and more for the popular Notre Dame women’s soccer team. Dakin was previously employed as one of our Communications Interns here at WRAC. Congratulations!

The Power of Vulnerability

“Vulnerability is not weakness. And that myth is profoundly dangerous.”(Brene Brown).

In this article over at Thought Catalog, Cat Tu writes about the myth of vulnerability. She gives examples where it is seen in the lens of that myth, as a weakness, and some counterexamples where it is a strength. Her examples of vulnerability as weakness often involve situations where we worry about labels; situations where expressing yourself can get you seen as a drama queen, or asking for  help can come off as needy. Most of the strength examples involve vulnerability in the context of relationships – such as admitting when you’re wrong, or sharing your emotional needs –  and that is where writing comes in. Writing is all about connections.

There’s a famous quote, sometimes attributed to Hemingway, that goes something like this: “There’s nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

That quote speaks to the same concept in a different voice. In writing, vulnerability is strength. Making connections inevitably opens up points of vulnerability – places where it is possible to attack the writing, or the writer. At the same time, these vulnerabilities are often what gives writing its strength. Metaphors, for example, can be a powerful way of illuminating a concept. But they are almost always imperfect in some way, and can be torn apart at their imperfect points. Many of the tools we use in writing are like this – both powerful and flawed. What’s more, many of those strengths and flaws cannot be teased apart from each other. The vulnerability is simply part of the equation, and very possibly an integral piece. It is certainly an interesting piece to explore.

Learn To Make Your Blog Effective

Frustrated and can’t seem to get your blog soaring? With a blogging community that won’t stop growing it’s not easy getting more people to read it. But on the other hand, why is it so simple that anyone can start a blog? It’s only an illusion, there are many difficulties that accompany blogging. You must be able to maintain the site and add new content constantly. The important question to ask yourself, “How can I make my blog great, informational, and interesting?” Lifehacker elaborates on seven amazing tips towards developing a successful blog.

beach-cottage-blog-tips-535x625One piece of advice that stood out to me was, “No blog is an island. Now that you have a blog, you’re part of the blogging community, and reciprocation plays a large part of that.” Leaving comments and trackbacks on other bloggers pages are great ways to get you noticed. In the world of blogging there is no room for modesty. You have to speak up and scratch a few backs. For instance, you can get started by contributing to Lifehacker in a number of ways: from starting your own Kinja blog, to becoming an author on Hackerspace, or emailing submissions@lifehacker.com.

Is reciprocation the only way, absolutely not? Other things, such as having an amazing headline, fresh content, and finding a niche can help your blog better develop. But, the thing I love most about writing is “voice”. Find your voice and don’t be afraid to use it, because that’s what will make yours different from the millions out there. Blogging isn’t any different from life it has its ups and downs. It’s up to you to keep your blogging wings spread and soaring.